Yoga helps gut digestive health in many ways. Medical studies confirm yoga’s benefits in older individuals with constipation due to a variety of issues including medications. In particular weight loss medications can predispose you to constipation. Furthermore, studies of younger individuals who have irritable bowel have been studied. Conclusions are that yoga for gut health can help a number of digestive woes including relieving gas, decreasing bloating, improving overall gut health microbial balance, and alleviating constipation by promoting relaxation, improving digestion, and increasing circulation in the digestive tract.
Here are a few specific Poses of yoga helpful for gut health:
- Wind-Relieving Pose (Pawanmuktasana): Lie on your back and bring your knees to your chest, hugging them in with your arms. This helps to massage the intestines and can help relieve constipation.
- Child’s Pose (Balasana): Kneel on the ground and sit back on your heels. Stretch your arms forward and bring your forehead to the ground. This pose helps to calm the mind and can stimulate the digestive system.
- Cat-Cow Pose (Marjaryasana-Bitilasana): Get on your hands and knees, and alternately arch and round your back, moving with your breath. This helps to massage the organs in the belly and can help alleviate constipation.
- Forward Bend (Uttanasana): Stand with your feet hip-width apart, bend forward from your hips, and allow your hands to rest on the ground or on a block. This pose helps to increase blood flow to the abdominal organs and can help stimulate digestion.
Urdhva Mukha Pasasana (Thread the Needle). From table top sweep one arm up and the sweep that hand under the other stretching it under your body and dropping your arm and cheek to the mat. Repeat on the other side.
Parivrtta Anjaneyasana (Revolved Crescent Lunge). Begin in Mountain Pose, step one leg back into a high lunge position. Bring hands into heart center and revolve the opposite elbow to outside the knee and hold for three breaths. Repeat on the other side beginning back at Mountain pose.
Meditation and Stretching Helps Bowel Health Too
It’s important to remember that yoga is not a cure-all for constipation, and that it’s always best to consult with a healthcare provider if you’re experiencing chronic or severe constipation. Simple food tips like better chewing can also be part of getting that digestive track in gear! As can using appropriate supplements. Additionally, maintaining a health gut includes not smoking, stabilizing your blood sugar, and eating a wholesome diet with plenty of fiber and hydration can also be helpful in preventing and treating many gut conditions in particular constipation. The practice of yoga for gut health has to be maintained, it’s beneficial while being practiced, it’s not a fix like a surgery! We incorporate the poses above and twisting poses into most every yoga class! And with or without constipation we recommend coming to classes at Hatha Yoga and Fitness to keep all parts of your body, even your gut, healthy and happy.